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How to paint your toenails while hugely pregnant

Ladies who are very pregnant in the winter are lucky. They can stuff their swollen tootsies into boots and slippers when out and about. The state of toes is only known to a select few people, like a spouse and the entire labor and delivery department. At that point, nobody is looking at her toes anyway.

But being enormously pregnant in summer presents unique challenges. Feet are seen. Pregnant women often develop the feet of beer-wagon pulling Clydesdales. The general public can see them coming for miles, and maybe even hear them too. Clomp. It’s easy for pregnant paddies to fall into neglect because they are way down there by the floor. They might as well be on one of Saturn’s moon. Sometimes, I am tempted to let them go feral simply because it’s easier. Professional pedicures can be expensive at a time when many of us want to save our pennies for diapers and ironic graphic hipster baby onesies.

As a veteran of many pregnancies that happened to span hot summers, I offer my advice:

Color Selection:

1. Line up multiple bottles of polish bought over the past ten years. Eliminate the choices where the chemicals have separated. Instead of throwing them out, inexplicably put them back in the cabinet. That will leave five. There’s a strawberry pink, banana yellow, deep cherry red, a chocolate brown, and a bright lime green.

2. Go to the kitchen for a snack, seized with sudden hunger.

3. While wiping off a handsome chocolate beard and some errant drips of strawberry juice on your feet, remember how you were going to paint your toenails.

4. Eh. It doesn’t really matter what color they are, does it? It’s not like you will even see them when standing. Grab closest color.

Currently on my toes: bright pink with purple/blue glitter topcoat

Getting started:

1. Thoroughly blend the color and paint chemicals for best results. Experts recommend to avoid shaking, and instead twist and roll the bottle so the two little beads inside race around.

2. Wheeee! Look at them go, like they are on a rollercoaster having the time of their lives. Get wistful about how this summer you haven’t and you won’t get to ride on a rollercoaster. Instead, you get to stand in the hot sun watching everyone else have a great time. You? You get to hold everyone’s phones and glasses so they don’t fly out of pockets like cruise missiles. The only reason they brought you along, big pregnant lady, was to guard valuables.

3. Wheee! They’re having a little race, the two silver beads. Make them go up and down. Stop. Roll backwards. Watch them cut through the polish, leaving a momentary trail of pigment in their wake. It’s fascinating and relaxing. Spin and spin, turn and turn, yawn. Turn, turn, turn the bottle. Watch the little mixing balls. Yawn. Stretch. Think how you can mix the polish while lying down.

4. Wake up a half hour later.

Applying Color:

1. Start by standing in the bathroom with a fan running to jettison the bothersome fumes. Lift foot so it’s resting on the closed toilet lid. Lean over to apply a dot of polish to the center of your big toe. Shift belly to get closer. Closer! CHARLIEHORSE! CHARLIEHORSE! KILL ME NOW! Calf seizes like an engine with no oil. Lumber around the bathroom howling until muscle releases, relaxing it’s iron grip on your known universe.

2. Decide to sit on the edge of the bed, not really caring if any errant polish drips on the blankets. Pull leg up until your foot is flat on the mattress. Lean. Shift belly. Baby kicks and it doesn’t feel friendly. Start with the toe that you were working on in the bathroom, noticing it’s sticky and almost dry. Charge ahead anyway, telling yourself the texture adds depth and interest. Plus, the glittery topcoat you just bought in a fit of optimism will disguise your laziness.

3. Creative people are said to “color outside the lines.” Gosh, the creativity is thick today. You are the most creative woman on the planet. You should have your own magazine. Hmmm. Maybe you’ll just tell people you let your five-year-old paint your toes?

4. Summon your five-year-old. “Sweetie, can you come here and help mommy with something?” You’ve officially hit rock bottom. Congratulations! Your toenails will have fresh color, you can give all the creditblame to a small child, and take comfort in the fact that in labor and delivery, nobody will be looking at your feet, anyway.*

(I haven’t actually sunk this low yet. I will.)

7 comments to How to paint your toenails while hugely pregnant

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